Minimizing AoI in resource-constrained multi-source relaying systems with stochastic arrivals

We consider a multi-source relaying system where the sources independently and randomly generate status update packets which are sent to the destination with the aid of a buffer-aided relay through unreliable links. We formulate a stochastic optimization problem aiming to minimize the sum average age of information (AAoI) of sources under per-slot transmission capacity constraints and a long-run average resource constraint. To solve the problem, we recast it as a constrained Markov decision process (CMDP) problem and adopt the Lagrangian method. We analyze the structure of an optimal policy for the resulting MDP problem that possesses a switching-type structure. We propose an algorithm that obtains a stationary deterministic near-optimal policy, establishing a benchmark for the system. Simulation results show the effectiveness of our algorithm compared to benchmark algorithms.